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I've had two customers accidentally over-pay me. Once I was paid more than the invoiced amount (about $1,600 more and without explanation) and once I accidentally over-billed and got paid the billed amount (about $500 too much). Would you send them a check with a note?
 

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If they accidentially over paid I say send them a refund. The feeling of honesty they get from you will be worth twice the money to you when they tell all their friends and neighbors... "... and he actually returned some money!"

I'd call them and tell them "I was going over my books and I wanted to tell you that you accidentially overpaid. Should I apply this to future work or would you prefer a refund check?"
 

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Definitely refund.
1) It's the right thing to do.
2) They may catch it later when doing taxes.
3) It will be some of the best advertising money that you never spent.
 

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I have been over paid a few times, but the customer has always included a note saying how it was a tip for the great work. I haven't been over paid by accident yet. But if it happens I would contact the customer and see what the intention was. I don't want what is not rightfully mine.
 

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Should I apply this to future work or would you prefer a refund check?"
wow, great response!

What we do not want to happen, is for them to think your rates are too high. Even if they like the work, they may have friends who get similiar work for a more competitive price.
 

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Is that really a question?

Absolutely a refund.

Don
 

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I would hate to see the bad Karma that bleeds from keeping the money!
 
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